Cymbal Choking

Easy Drumming That Sounds Hard

Cymbal choking is a dynamic drumming technique used to abruptly silence the sound of a cymbal. Cymbal Choking is often overlooked by most free drum lessons-based websites and educational products for drummers. With this free drum lesson, Jared Falk fills this void by teaching you how to choke cymbals, and how to use them within drum beats and as song enders.

Cymbal choking can be used for accents – emphasizing particular rhythmic figures or signaling the conclusion of a section of a song – or as a way to match other instruments’ sustain. Cymbal choking was actually the most used technique for playing on cymbals way back in the day. Chick Webb and Baby Dodds were two of the major practitioners of this style. By the time we hit the late 1920s, guys like Gene Krupa and Dave Tough began letting the sound of their cymbals naturally fade out instead of choking them after each stroke – which is actually the way most crash, splash and China cymbals are played today.

There are two different ways of choking a cymbal. With the first one, you choke a cymbal with the opposite hand from the one you strike it with. This works well for cymbals that are within reach of both hands. With the second one, you play and choke a cymbal using the same hand. This is the only way to choke cymbals that are far off to one side of the drum set.

Cymbal choking can be tricky to perform, and should be done carefully so you don’t end up injuring yourself – much like Jared does in the video! You can use this dynamic drumming technique within drum beats, drum fills, and drum solos. So you can actually take all the drum beats and drum fills from this website and use cymbal choking within them.

To start incorporating cymbal choking into drum beats right away, use it instead of hi-hat strokes on the free drum lesson “Beginner Punk Rock Drum Beats“. For drum fill applications, check the free drum lesson “Intermediate Double Bass Drum Fills” and choke some of the crash strokes you’ll find within each pattern. We’ve also put together a fun little video with behind the scenes footage from this lesson’s recording process. So get your favorite drink; sit back and just relax while you watch the video “Cymbal Choking – Behind The Scenes“.




  • isaac joe says:

    nice tutorial,

  • Brandon says:

    Hey guys, I know you think it is all in good fun, but there are kids of all different ages on your learning website. If you’re going to leave a lesson like this up, you need to have some kind of appropriateness warning at the beginning. Poor form…


    Hi jared i am from India and i want to know that why the director of the show not allowed u to leave the show for that day as you were bleeding badly and also fallen down. please reply me

  • Clemente says:

    The 2011 Frazier Canteen dinner & dance is SOLD OUT! If you’d like to be added to our mailing list next year, call (502) 753-5663.


  • Saul says:

    Please put the sheet music for the beat in the beginning of the video! 😀

  • Joseph says:

    Lol u had me going for a min but when u got up off the floor with blood all over your shirt i new it was bs

  • sara says:

    aww poor jared

  • Mitch C says:

    Most AWESUM video i have ever seen!! hahaha! Jared, u R Flipn Awesum man! gave me a good laugh. this is definetly going on facebook 🙂
    I love watching all your vids, but this one just tops them all!! From a fellow Drummer in South Africa 🙂

  • Glenn says:

    hahah your a funny guy

  • kelvin hart says:

    LOLLLLLLLLLL ……..Victor, u’re just a freak, ah gosh! Jared, i’m gonna weep ur as off. Clowns. Meeeeen….i luv dis site.

  • kelvin hart says:

    pls let him go wash up, he’s gonna slumb there on stage….pls producer/directorrrrrrrrrr.

  • Mitch says:

    LMAO that was funny, had me going for a minute, but when you ended looking like u were hit my a nerve agent well ehhhh . . . but good stuff bub. this site is wonderful

  • Dom Kilsby says:

    Ahh Jared you’re a funny one 😉 keep it up 😀

  • Santiago says:

    ouchhh you are bleeding jajaj

  • Jura says:

    Gimana caranya tu ya qaqa ? ;;)

    • Anas says:

      I know what you mean, its hard to find good help these days. People now days just don’t have the work ethic they used to have. I mean consider whoveer wrote this post, they must have been working hard to write that good and it took a good bit of their time I am sure. I work with people who couldn’t write like this if they tried, and getting them to try is hard enough as it is.

  • Theo says:

    Jared: gotta say right up until when you passed out i completely believed it! awesome acting im realy impressed with this site its been a great help to my drumming! keep it up 😀

  • alain says:

    ah ah ah nice video ty

  • Brian says:

    What was the point of this?

  • Yamikani says:

    Keep up the wefuorndl piece of work, I read few content on this web site and I believe that your site is very interesting and holds bands of great info .

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